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Amazon launches support service for HTML5-based mobile app developers

The Amazon Appstore is now open for HTML5 business. Amazon has launched web app support, allowing developers to submit URLs for applications and mobile sites that will be distributed to customers.

This move cuts out the third-party middle man and instead provides developers with access to Amazon's In-App Purchasing API for JavaScript.

"We've heard from developers that making their Web apps available for mobile devices is hard because many times it means rewriting their app, which takes extra time and often requires third party tools," Mike George, vice president of Amazon Appstore, Games and Cloud Drive, said in a statement.

By participating in the new programme, developers present URLs and metadata for their HTML5 app directly to the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Portal, through which the retail giant distributes content to millions of customers using the Amazon Appstore in nearly 200 countries.

Web applications will receive the same treatment any native app would, including the new, faster web runtime, thanks to the open-source Chromium project. The runtime includes standards-based extensions that allow developers to build an app once and then deploy it across multiple platforms without making any changes.

And what would a mobile application be without a sales opportunity? Amazon promises developers the ability to easily integrate money-making plans, like subscriptions, level upgrades and digital currencies.

"We're giving Web developers the tools they need and all the benefits that native apps already enjoy in the Amazon Appstore and on Kindle Fire. This opens up new possibilities — starting with faster discovery, access to tools for increased monetization, and the ability to reach new customers for greater exposure," George continued.

The launch is the latest move in Amazon's effort to build a complete end-to-end ecosystem for app developers. Other programmes towards that end include the availability of Amazon Web Services, GameCircle, Login with Amazon, and in-app purchasing.

Developers can dive into the Amazon mobile app distribution programme online.